Paid Audience

Make $27-100 As A Paid Audience Member
(In America In 2019)

By Michael Wong | April 12, 2019.

Paid Audience

Did you know you can earn cash as a paid audience member on the taping of popular TV shows?

If this sounds like something you might like to try, read on...

Why Do TV Shows Pay The Studio Audience?

Top-rated TV shows get far more ticket requests than they can provide, hence they do not need to pay people to be part of the studio audience.

Less popular TV shows however pay people to be part of the studio audience because the show:

  • typically do not attract enough requests for free studio audience tickets
  • typically require more hours (4 to 8 hours+) than most people are willing to spend watching a show
  • tapes early in the morning which is inconvenient for most people

How Much Does Paid Audience Work Pay?

You can expect to earn anywhere from $27 for a 2 hour taping and up to $100 for 5 1/2 hours as a paid audience member.

There are no special requirements to work as a paid audience member. You just have to be willing to participate and have a few hours to spare.

If you have plenty of time on your hands, this could be an easy way to earn some extra money.

Top 5 Paid Audience Work

Here are my top 5 TV shows that pay its studio audience members.

TV shows are taped throughout the year. If a show has finished taping for the time being, check again every now and then to find out when it resumes filming.

You can also email Onset Productions at, or call them on (310) 214-3777, Monday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. (PST), to find out when a show will resume filming.

Visit each website for more information:

Safeword screenshot

1. Safeword (

  • Earn $100 cash doing paid audience work on the taping of MTV's Safeword.
  • Safeword, hosted by Terrence J, Safeword, is the place where celebrities and famous comedians are faced with a series of games and challenges that they can either complete or chicken out and use their Safeword.
  • Show times: 9:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.
  • Duration:
    • 5½ hours.
    • 2 shows, back to back.
  • Compensation: $100, cash in hand, at the end.
  • TV studio: Hollywood, CA.
  • Minimum age: 18+
Build Series screenshot

2. Build Series (

  • Earn $27 to $68 cash as a paid audience member on the taping of the AOL Build Series.
  • Build is a live interview series where some of today's biggest names in entertainment, tech, fashion and business share the stories behind their projects and passions.
  • The online-only show is shot and streamed live at It is not broadcast on television.
  • Show times: Taping times vary, but are usually at 10 or 10.30 a.m. and 2 and 2.30 p.m., Monday to Friday, throughout the year.
  • Pay (cash in hand, at the end):
    • 2 hours: $27
    • 4 hours: $58
  • TV studio: AOL Headquarters, 770 Broadway (between 8th and 9th Street), New York, NY 10003.
  • Minimum age: 18+
Food Network Star screenshot

3. Food Network Star (

  • Earn $50 cash as part of the paid studio audience on the Food Network Star.
  • You must have no food allergies or dietary restrictions, because you may be sampling a contestant's food.
  • Show times: Each date is a different location and description.
  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Compensation: $50, cash in hand, at the end.
  • TV studio: Culver City (Los Angeles), CA
  • Minimum age: 21+
The People's Court screenshot

4. The People's Court (

  • Earn $70 cash and a free lunch doing paid audience work on the taping of The People's Court, where the honorable Judge Marilyn Milian renders verdicts and dispense legal insight in the courtroom where justice and reality collide.
  • Show times:
    • Tuesday to Thursday, at 10 a.m.
    • Catch the free shuttle bus to the TV studio on Tuesdays at 8:30 a.m. It returns around 5 p.m.
  • Call time on Wednesdays and Thursdays is 9:15 a.m. (no free bus shuttle).
  • Duration:
    • About 9 hours: 8:30 a.m. or 9:15 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Watching courtroom cases for eight hours, with a one hour lunch break.
    • Lunch is provided.
  • Compensation: $70, cash in hand, at the end of the day.
  • Transportation: Free shuttle bus from Manhattan to/from Stamford on Tuesdays only.
  • TV studio: Connecticut Film Center, 300 Stillwater Avenue, Stamford, CT 06902.
  • Phone: 203-399-0200
  • Parking: Free 350 parking spaces
  • Minimum age: 18+
Steve Wilkos Show screenshot

5. Steve Wilkos Show (

  • Earn $65 cash and a free lunch as a paid studio audience member on the taping of the Steve Wilkos Show.
  • The daytime talk show is hosted by Steve Wilkos, former director of security on The Jerry Springer Show, and focuses on topics such as adultery, divorce, spousal abuse, sexual violence, harassment, cyber crime, deadbeat parents, teenage pregnancy, alcohol addiction, etc.
  • Show times:
    • Wednesday at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., August to April.
    • Each show takes around two hours to tape.
  • Duration:
    • 8 hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • You watch two shows.
    • Lunch is provided.
  • Compensation: $65, cash in hand, at the end of the day.
  • Transportation: Free bus leaves East 57th Street, NYC, at 9 a.m., and returns around 5 p.m. You are not allowed to drive yourself to the studio.
  • TV studio: Rich Forum Theatre, 307 Atlantic Street, Stamford, CT 06901.
  • Minimum age: 18+